Affordable Options for Cloth Diapering
Here at Boop Baby, we want to make your cloth diapering journey fit your lifestyle as
well as it possibly can. I (Wendy) have cloth diapered for a multitude of reasons throughout my journey. I started due to a baby with sensitive skin… I continued because I was a little obsessed… and with my third, I had just gotten divorced and money was seriously, seriously tight. I was lucky to have had more than enough diapers from my older two to get by with my third child, so I never struggled to buy him disposable diapers. I was on WIC, food stamps, you name it, while the enforcement agency tried to track the ex down to make him pay. If it weren’t for some of my friends and family, I would have lost my house. Though I struggled to pay almost all my bills, I never once felt that twinge of guilt that I couldn’t provide clean diapers for my little boy. Even throughout the utter chaos of my life, I counted myself very lucky.
Buying diapers should not be a struggle
If you get to looking at cloth diapers and the cost looks scary, or makes it look like this is only for trendy millenials who can afford to throw away money
to save the planet, think again! There are several options for affordable diapering, depending on your budget. Don’t forget! Cloth diapers can be used for multiple children, so whether you want three kids or ten, you can use those diapers until they wear out – and then you can use them as clean up rags. Either way, you have more than likely saved a little (or a lot) of money and done some good for the landfills as well!
Option 1 – Elemental Joy
These were created by the bumGenius company as an answer to those super-cheap diapers you can buy directly from China. They are made in the United States, have an amazing fit, and can be stuffed with flats for a great, cost-effective, but still modern cloth diaper.
Ok but really, those diapers on Amazon have way more prints
Here’s the deal with the direct-from-China brands and other “brands” that rebrand those same brands. The inserts are weak. So even if you buy these diapers and don’t have quality issues later on, (like delaminating [the plastic lamination layer inside the diaper peeling off] or snaps falling off) you will need to stuff them with something else. Not many babies’ pee is held in by the microfiber inserts that these companies include with their diapers. I speak to a lot of people who say cloth diapering didn’t work for them because they leaked, and nearly every time, they were using these off brand diapers with their included inserts. As long as the shells are in good condition, you can buy flats or prefolds to use as inserts. A hidden cost of these diapers is that they tend to have shorter life than other diapers, like the Elemental Joy. Delamination and broken snaps are not rare, like they are with other brands, but very common. You may get to use them for three kids, or you may get to use them for three months. I had an off-brand wetbag that I bought (because it was a licensed design that was not actually “licensed” per se because these brands don’t comply with copyright) and it only lasted six months. Other wetbags in my stash are eight years old and still have life left in them. If you decide to buy those diapers, keep in mind they do not represent the quality of all cloth diapers and you may get more mileage out of a different brand. Also, if they leak, get better inserts. If you are having trouble with these diapers and you have already bought them, don’t hesitate to reach out. We can help you online or in-store to see what the problem is, salvage what we can, or get you more absorbency. We don’t want to sell you something more expensive, but we want to help you be successful!
Option 2 – Imagine Bamboo All-in-One
This is a fantastic option for an all-in-one type diaper that is made with natural fibers. Imagine brand is one of the most cost-effective and best-fitting all-in-ones on the market. So if you want to upgrade from pockets to all-in-ones, these are awesome. They are currently $16.95, which is pretty inexpensive for a bamboo all-in-one! They also have a stay dry all-in-one that is even less expensive, but we have fewer of them in stock.
If you don’t want to mess around, and want the diapers to just *work*…
Prefolds are for sure your best choice! They hold a LOT of liquid, they are old school, but they are still around because they get the job done! You can fold them in thirds and lay them inside a cover (I don’t like this as much as snappi’ing them on because it gives baby a square butt that’s a bit bulky) or you can put them on with Boingos or a Snappi.
Osocozy prefolds come in two sizes and both cotton and bamboo. Cotton is sturdier, but bamboo is softer and more absorbent (also more expensive). If you want real workhorses that last a long time, I would go for cotton. For more in-depth information about using prefolds, you can watch our Cloth Basics – Prefolds video here.
Or, there’s the really old school – Flats
Flats are actually one of my favorites. I have to mention them because I have been in love with them since I did the flats and handwashing challenge for the first time back in 2012. I can’t explain it, but
something about them just speaks to the olden-times-fascinated-person-in-me. I have a stash of flats that I mainly use when we go camping. They are not quite as absorbent as prefolds, but you can easily stack multiple flats for extended wear (or overnight) and they are super nice if you end up needing to hand wash. I actually bring flats camping because they don’t get ruined sitting in the sun in a laminated bag for three days, they are all one layer, so the washer cleans them up super easily when we get home! They are the least expensive and only come in one size (unless you need extra big ones for absorbency). They also come in cotton and bamboo. I will be posting a video about flats and flat folding in the next couple weeks. Mainly because I am kind of a flats nerd.
If you have any others to add, please feel free to do so! I would love to hear about new things that I don’t know about yet!
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